Better East Texas: The HPV Vaccine -, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

Better East Texas: The HPV Vaccine

By Pat Stacey

Recently the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advisory committee made the recommendation that starting at age 11, boys should be immunized with the human papillomavirus vaccine. 

This is the vaccine that presents cervical cancer in girls and has now been found to be effective against certain cancers in boys as well. 

The controversy is that it works in girls by preventing the causes of these cancers that can be transmitted sexually.  And that is where this mandate went sideways for many parents starting right here in Texas. 

The question of whether to vaccinate or not forces parents to address the difficult fact that at some point their children will be sexually active and we just aren't comfortable doing that. 

If the marketers of the drug and now potential legislation had focused centrally on the benefits that this vaccine provides, there would most certainly be a higher acceptance.  Instead parents are shying away from what appears to be a huge cancer preventer. 

It is a question that each family will address along with the question of other vaccines but it is a question that cannot be ignored so parents – man up and woman up and talk about the HPV vaccine, your children's health may or may not depend on it but they most certainly deserve a discussion about it.

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